We told Eddie about Kim. He knew it was coming too, but I think when we are young the inability to understand or grasp the reality of those things is even stronger. Eddie was taken aback. His first question to Steve was "How is Dale?" That was so precious for Steve and I to hear. It really touched our hearts. Yesterday Eddie called us on our cell phones after the funeral; he said. "How is Dale?" That was a double for Eddie, who more often than not doesn't seem to notice the world around him in his adolescent cloud. This blesses me.
Life and death are a mystery. They are everywhere and all around; sometimes in the obvious such as I have just talked about, and in the not as obvious, like the grain of wheat; like our life as Christians, which dies progressively to "self", and lives progressively to "redemption". Dying has seemed to me lately like giving birth; pain and travailing giving forth to a new life. For Kim that new life is in Heaven. I see so many changes in the earth these last few years. More death than I ever remember. I don't quite know how to take it in. For some we can rejoice, and for others, it is great sorrow. Every time I hear of a movie star or someone famous dying, it grieves me greatly, because their death has not necessarily translated them into new life. I don't worry about Kim's soul I know where it is, but I find my heart heavy for the world. I am reminded how my Heavenly Father gave the life of His only begotten Son so that those who believe in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. The symbolism is everywhere; I have often marveled at how death reigns in the winter, but life reigns in the spring. Out of hard dead sticks come soft supple buds, new leaves, new life. I understand it, and yet, it is a mystery.
THE ANGELThe hospice nurse was a friend of Kim's from previous days, and the Lord brought her to be Kim's hospice nurse. She told a story at the funeral that blessed us all. She said that as the end drew near, Kim whispered to her to get Dale (who had been up all the previous night, and was now sleeping while Kim's Mom and the nurse took the shift). As the nurse turned to go get Dale, she looked up and saw an Angel of the Lord; yes, an Angel. And then he began to ascend. Kim said "hurry". Dale came quickly to Kim's side and was able to be with her those last moments; and that was the end. It was very comforting to think of that Angel there to assist Kim to Heaven. What a treasure.
|Dale and Kim standing next to Russell and friends and family at his going away party last year.|
"Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone ; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.